Paul Rival, with Gallic elegance and wit, brings these six unfortunate women to life as they use all their feminine wiles to ward off Henry's black rages and capricious moods. Sometimes they fail, as Ann Boleyn and Catherine Howard did. Henry was never a man to mince words; when he first set eyes on his dumpy Anne of Cleves, he bellowed 'She's frightful! I have been deceived." Only once -with plain Jane Seymour- did he ever show true affection to his spouse.